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  CSPAN    Today in Washington    News/Business. News.  

    November 26, 2009
    6:00 - 7:00am EST  

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cigarette smoking. people make this choice. but they have to make an informed decision. they need to be out there if they want to pay attention to what these problems are. >> i hope that we can make progress in finding a way to make football as st. as possible. thank you again. this has been a great hearing and i still feel that the congress should not inject itself into the negotiations between the nfl and their players. and i think that as this pertains to improving the safety of football, we can promote the research and education. i think that some of the tough decisions that have been advocated have been made at the state and local level because of the system of government. thank you very much for holding this hearing.
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>> thank you for those excellent questions. build a lot -- bill delahunt? >> i want to congratulate the work that is being done at boston university. . ston university. professor cantu is here. and dr. anna mckee. i ha dposed posed a question toe first panel, and no one had an answer. i think the point that goes to the issue of the individual, or in the case of those live now attained maturity, their parents should be well
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informed. from my cursory reading of the reality that oftentimes inditia of problems occur decades later, is there -- and it would appear that the protein tau, as was shown on the slides earlier, is a red flag. and that seems to be indisputable. is there a tool that can measure cte, while an individual is alive? or is this always done in the course of an autopsy?
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>> well, no. right now we have no way to diagnose cte during life. it is then a huge battle for us to recognize the cte is an issue. we have had to wait until these players died and the added post- mortem diagnosis to recognize that condition. >> it would appear, however, according what seems to be more than a consensus, a unanimous opinion, that cte is -- indicative, is without doubt a factor. , that if we had awareness of, could be a prognosticator in terms of what could have been particularly to young people to dissipating and football later in life. >> i think there are tremendous things we need to learn. we can learn them first from
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these autopsies. we have learned where the disease affects the brain the most. we did not know that three years ago. there has been an explosion of knowledge concerning this disorder -- >> i do not have too much time. is there research being done now that would provide a diagnostic tool, so that if i happen to have sons and i was concerned that i could refer them to your shop or some hospital to and for me -- to inform me as to whether there would be future risk? >> we are setting up logic to the studies of players and looking for their way to diagnose it during life or to take what we have learned from the post-mortem exam and apply it to living people. we don't have that technique yet. we always need more funding.
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we have just the beginnings of funding. >> what i think we have is an epidemic. and i dare say, given the autopsies performed on deceased nfl players, i mean, how many players at any given time and the national football league -- it is minuscule when compared to the universe of 5 million participants in any given year in football. and we hear, in terms of people in high school, obviously they don't have the same physical capacities and strengths that someone would in professional sports. there could very well be -- i could put this out as a premise -- it very well could be much of our concerns about depression, about alzheimer's, about the
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coal whole array of symptoms associated with the function of the brain could be as a result of post-concussion syndrome. and i in the ballpark -- ball park or an my way up? >> i am in it -- i think you're in the ballpark. cte could be playing a much bigger role than we have presently realized. cte may be responsible for the depression we are seeing in retired players. may be irresponsible for cognitive impairment. there are lots of people fled suffered head injuries, -- have suffered head injuries and have psychological problems. this is an untapped concern that i am short our knowledge needs
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to expand dramatically into. don't forget the soldiers. i get calls and e-mails from soldiers every day talking about memory concerns, how they had an ied. this has she legs, and we are scratching this ha-- this has l, and we are scratching the surface. >> i am talking about the kind of funding that would be necessary to deal with this. the costs that would be associated with depression, memory loss, dementia, alzheimer's are costing society far more than the funding that will hopefully result in a diagnostic tool for us to have the kind of informed patient were informed parents to make a decision. with that, if anyone else wants to comment?
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>> i think you're absolutely right. we have a logic togiola -- "washington journal" study right now of 175 athletes -- a longtiditudinal study of 175 athletes. look at the head injury rate in the prison population. one example is my former colleague wwe, chris benoit, he had a very serious case of this disease at 40 years old. he killed his wife and his child and then himself. >> thank you for your line of inquiry. >> we are talking about disorders that cause cognitive disorders. we are not just talking about
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alzheimer's and maybe we are not just talking about law sat scores. we are talking about impulse control and emotional control that can show up as huge distractions and disorders throughout life. and every year, there is some kind of behavior on behalf of football players and i am forced to wonder what is the true cause. could they have had impulse control loss due to a football injury? >> sheila jackson-lee, texas. >> thank you very much we are in and out because we are overlapping hearings and meetings. i cannot articulate at the level of importance that this hearing i believe is for the congress but also for the american people. i disagree with my colleague,
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and i do believe that labor negotiations are vibrant and vital, and i think they are what they should be -- adversaries or maybe even people who agree with each other working out responsible rights for both management and players. but as i have listened to the witnesses and listened to mr. bentsen who hails from my home state, i know from which he speaks. no politician sets up an event on friday night football unless you are sitting in the stadium watching football in texas. i know how intimately this game is for those who live in many places and it certainly texas. as i listened, i do not see any way to handle this holistically,
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unless it rises to the level of the national game. it is a national game. it is america's pastime. it raises to the level of a congressional response. as i said, not in a punitive manner, but in a collaborative manner. in a manner that says, we want the sport to last. we would like there to be more boys playing. and we also have girls football. and we want more people playing and more people lasting. mr. barbour, let me thank you for all that you have given to the people who watch you. do you think the structure of the nfl contracts are contributor to players shielding their symptoms and is there anything to change that culture? >> i will answer that question.
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come i. ifit comes down to pride. i hated seeing someone else do my job. i think my contracts were not incentivized based on playing time, but for me, it was a sense of pride because i loved doing my job. >> can we balance the pride with ways -- i was going to refer to playing times and incentives -- >> you balance that with education. if you give players the knowledge of their injuries and the potential dangers of their injuries and have them take control of it as opposed to relying solely on dr. input or trainer and put our culture -- coach's input, they are much more likely to create -- to make the correct decision.
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>> we need to support them by educating trainers and coaches so they do not get the evil eye when they do decide to see me out because they do have cte. mr. benson, let me offer to you my sympathy. you said something very important. mr. chairman, i am hoping this testimony might be on the judiciary committee website in indicate to parents across america and spend some time reading the outstanding testimony this panel has given. your bill, in particular, and i have many cases in my own congressional district. in fact, one summer, we had three or four of those kinds of incidences on the field where people were dehydrated. you believe we should include the high school player, is that not correct? >> do you want to ask it again? >> do you believe we should
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include high school football and our assessment of improving safety and insuring safety on the field? >> absolutely. this summer you are referring to may be this summer that my own some -- my own son died. seven players died that summer. >> your own bill in texas deals with that kind of inattention and requires more attention to these young men? >> absolutely. >> i want to get a copy of the bill. i want to go to mr nowinski. tell us about the wrestler that no one could explain what was going on. do you have documented evidence that that was cte victim? >> it was summer of 2007. chris wrestled for 22 years and was known as a guy who would not take a day off. he was a physical wrestler. she once confided to me about a
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year before the incident that he had more concussions that he could count. he seemed interested in my work. i think he knew something was wrong with him. in@@@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ rl@ @ @ he was keeping a very strange journal. and then the incident happened, he killed everyone over a couple of days. the media jumped on it as a steroid i want -- and we knew, from with other cases, other players committing sue said, i thought otherwise. we looked at his brain, and it was the most damaged brain, it was more damaged. it was very severely damaged. >> so you would able to look at chris' brain? >> yes. >> and found evidence of c.t.e.? >> yes. >> so if we take both of these -- the wrestlers, as i understand it, don't wear helmets. and i've listened to, i think, dr. bailey -- i'm sorry, i'm looking at the testimony as i
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came into the room, talking about the new technology, which i don't understand if we can have people fly into space, we can do better on technology, but do you wear helmets? wrestling? >> no. >> so how would we intervene? >> we were talking about that, because he's the new medical chair for the wwe, and it's actually much easier, because pro wrestling is fake, the contact is always accidental, it's just a question of risk management and education for guys. of risk management. >> what we have overall is a curable entity. it may mean we look at the nfl in terms of legislation or some intervention that is not punitive but helpful. and then we look at high school football. weaker? in high school students at using the helmets -- for weaker necks. and the last point is, what is
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this about being in the circle and know you have a concussion but just going in and playing? how do we break that, for the high school and college players? >> i will echo tikki. it is always going to be hard to sell to diagnose and take yourself out. -- self-diagnose and take yourself out. if your teammates know, they will -- many incidents now in the last year or two where players will tell the coach, get him out of there. get him evaluated. if everybody knows, the coaches, the parents and the players, this would not happen. >> and then you work with getting the technology investment to make a helmet that is the fitting of a nation that travels into space and has an international space station. wouldn't that work? mr. chairman, let me to why it for allowing this line of
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questioning. this is something we cannot overlook and we can find ways of solving it. i hope the education is for the whole structure, because players being educated and parents -- being frightened and intimidated, i don't want my son to be the one on the bench and miss these opportunities and my coach and trainers do not understand. i think it has to be in infrastructure change if we are going to get the best results. thank you. i yield back. >> thank you 3. . maxine waters, you are now the person who will end our discussion. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank you for your interest in this subject. this is not the first hearing we have held. -- basically focusing someone on the nfl and focusing on various
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aspects of the problems with football and the nfl in particular. today, this focus is on brain injury. i would like to first thank, aside from thanking you, secondly, i would like to thank mr. benson. i thank you for coming to this committee to relive the pain and trauma of your child's death. that is not easy and i understand met and i respect you for coming here and sharing with us today what happened to your job. -- to your child. i thank all of the persons on both of the panels. i did not have the opportunity to hear it all because we are between committees. i did your dr. culberhouse. thank you so very much, not
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only for actually stepping out of the box and telling it like this, but here it come from a woman is so pleasing to note that not only were you president of tampa bay but that you dare to say what a lot of others don't dare to say. a lot of people in here today were protecting the nfl. all lot of people here today on the payroll of the nfl and hoping that somehow they would look good enough to get a pay raise because they came here and performed for them today. as you know, i don't take a back seat per -- on these issues. i respect everything that is being done to try and prevent these head injuries. i have heard everything that was said about what we know, what we don't know, about how we should
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do a better job of educating and advising. i have heard what was said about helmets and other equipment, but in the final analysis, if you play football, and other sports, some other sports, there will be head injuries. i am told that simply by the movement of the brain inside the head that you are going to have people that are going to end up with injuries. the reason that i come in here today is not so much that i need to be told that the study is correct or not so correct. i have common sense as most of us have. we know that hard hits an people hitting their heads will do something. you will not be the same. we do know that there are
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people who love had concussions, players who were sent back out on the field. my husband was a football player. he told me about the times that people were knocked out and put back. it happened more than it happened -- it happened more than it happens now. i am concerned about children and football players. but for the nfl, that is $8 billion strong, i am concerned about what they are going to do to compensate these players and their families after it is now owned that they have dementia or that they have received this serious injury and a half to end up fighting, i mean fighting with the nfl to try to get support for their families. i have not been involved with brain injuries, but i have been involved with assisting other football players to happen to be friends of ours, two of whom have died, who fought with the
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nfl for support. today, as we sit here and talk about this, the nfl is in negotiations. and asked if, in fact, they were entertaining anything in those bargaining sessions about head injuries. of course i did not get an answer, because it is not happening. so, mr. chairman, while in fact i know that you wanted to take a look at the steady today and to learn exactly what is going on that would be helpful in preventing these injuries and what could be done to prevent them, we must keep our eye on the ball. we must understand that the nfl has an antitrust exemption, and that that is a huge b.
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if we ever want them to get to do the -- to do the right thing, we have to know and understand that we are going after that anti-trust exemption. they cannot continue to enjoy making the money that they are making and not being willing to compensate these injured players and these family -- their families who are dying on the street and dying in alleys, broke, with dementia, and they are not the stars that they were when they played. i am committed to the proposition that we have the authority to take away that exemption, and we need to start down the road to do that in order to get compensation for injuries that are going to continue to have been no matter what anybody says. i yield back the balance of my time. >> thank you so much pe.
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i am going to insert the "the new york times" article by allen schwartz in today's "the new york times" -- nfl players with head injuries find a voice. i cannot thank all the witnesses enough. without objection, we will have five days for members to submit additional testimony. we will also have five days for other witnesses to submit any materials for additional comments to their own statements. and i will submit a statement, received from brent boyd, a retired nfl player, who suffers from conative problems resulting from football head
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injuries. i thank mr. goodlatte and ms. waters for their tenacity and staying power. and this hearing is adjourned. thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> today on c-span -- middle east envoy george mitchell announces a deal reached with israel on west bank settlements. then today's "washington journal" with discussions on world hunger, healthcare, and the conservative movement. larkte the white house medal of freedom ceremony for director
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steven spielberg. and former ambassador and deputy defense secretary paul wolfowitz discusses u.s. strategy after the collapse of the soviet union. >> on this vote, the ayes are 60, the nays are 39, 3/5 of the senate is duly sworn, and the motion is agreed to. >> with that vote, the senate moves its healthcare bill to the floor. starting monday and through december, follow the entire debate and how the bill would affect access to medical care. , the public option, taxes, abortion, and medicare, live on our companion network, c-span2, the only network that brings you the senate gavel to gavel. >> special middle east envoy george mitchell wednesday announced a decision by the israeli government to
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temporarily limit settlement construction in the west bank. the palestinians so far have said the offer does not go far enough. special envoy mitchell speaks with reporters about the middle east peace process for a half-hour. >> good afternoon, everybody. welcome to the briefing. as promised, senator mitchell is here, and he is going to give you an update on the recent announcement by the israeli government with regard to settlements. so without further ado, senator mitchell. >> good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. prime minister netanyahu has just announced its moratorium on new settlement buildings. i think it's important to look at this issue and a broader context. particularly how it affects the situation on the ground and how it can contribute to a constructive negotiating process that will ultimately lead to an
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end to the conflict and to the two state solution. it falls short of a full settlement freeze, but it is more than any israeli government has done before, and can help move the toward agreement between the parties. as president obama has said many times, we believe that a two-state solution to the conflict is the best way to realize the shared goal of israelis and palestinians to live in peace and security. it is also in the interest of the united states. it is urgently needed. the president knows that achieving this goal will be difficult, but he also has said that he will not weaver and his persistent pursuit of comprehensive peace in the middle east. for that reason, he has dedicated himself and his administration to the resumption
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of israeli-palestinian negotiations and to the creation of an atmosphere that maximizes the prospects@@@@@@@@ @ @ @ @ @ to be clear, the steps we have suggested to all parties, israel, the plinds, and the arab states, to improve the atmosphere for negotiations are not ends in themselves. and they certainly are not preconditions to negotiations. but they can make a valuable contribution toward achieving our goal of successful negotiations that result in a two-state solution. that's why we've urged the palestinians to expand and improve their security efforts and to take strong and meaningful action on incitement. it's why we urged the arab states to take steps toward normalization of relations with israel. and it's why we've urged israel
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to stop settlement activity. to stop settlement activity. as i said earlier, while the fall short of a full freeze, we believe the steps announced by the prime minister are significant and could have substantial impact on the ground. for the first time ever, an israeli government will stop housing approvals and all new construction of housing units and related infrastructure in the west bank settlements. that's a positive development. the israelis have said that the only exception will be a small number of public buildings, such as schools and synagogues, within the existing settlements. under the moratorium, those buildings already under construction will be completed. but the number of buildings under construction will decline since, as each new building is completed, there will not be a
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new building started. so implementation of the moratorium could mean a much less settlement construction than would occur if there is no moratorium. the steps announced today are the result of a unilateral decision by the government of israel. this is not an agreement with the united states. or is it an agreement with the palestinians. united states policy on settlements remains unaffected and unchanged. as the president has said, america does not accept the legitimacy of continued israeli settlements. we recognize that the palestinians and other arabs are concerned because israel's moratorium permits the completion of buildings already started and limits the effect of the moratorium to the west bank -- concerns which we share. as to jerusalem, united states
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policy remains unaffected and unchanged. alice has been stated by every previous administration which addressed the issue, the status of jerusalem and all other permanent status' issues must be resolved by the parties through negotiations. the united states also disagrees with some israeli actions in jerusalem affecting palestinians in such areas as housing, including the continuing pattern of the fictions and demolitions of palestinian homes. the united states has not accepted and disagrees with any unilateral action by either party which could have the effect of pre-empting negotiations. house we and others have said many times, the way to move forward is to enter negotiations without preconditions and reach agreement on the two-state solution: a jewish state of israel living side by side in
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peace and security with an independent, contiguous, and a viable palestinian state. as the secretary of state said today, and i quote, "today's announcement by the government of israel helps move forward toward resolving the israeli-palestinian conflict. we believe that through good faith negotiations, the parties can mutually agree on an outcome which ends the conflict and reconciles the palestinian goal of an independent and viable state, based on the 1967 lines, with a great swaps, and the is really goal of a jewish state with secure and recognized borders that reflect subsequent developments and meet israeli security requirements. let me say to all the people of the region and world: our
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commitment to achieving a solution with two states living side by side in peace and security is on we've during." that's the end of the secretary's quote. despite the difficulties and the complex political circumstances in the region, we are committed to the relaunch of negotiations and to the two-state solution. we will not be de turd by setbacks. we are determined to stay the course in the cause of comprehensive peace in the middle east. thank you, ladies and gentlemen. i will now be pleased to respond to your questions. >> we all thought you were going to come down here and say you were frustrated and you were going to resign the i guess that is not the case. [laughter] you're going to keep at it? i guess the question is is this the best that you could get?
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and are you going to try to sell it to the palestinians as the best that they could get? and this, as you noted, does not. so i guess the bottom line is is this the best you could get out of the is release? >> i will address the latter part of your question first and then i will return to your earlier comment. our goal remains the relaunch of negotiations as soon as possible in an atmosphere in which they can succeed. we recognize that the internal political situation is more challenging on both sides especially in light of the aftereffects of the goldstone report. we've always intended that negotiations will proceed on a variety of tracks, including high-level direct talks the establish the framework and set the tone, parallel talks with the u.s. about key issues, and
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lower level direct talks with the details of the issues are often worked out. given the current environment, we think it makes sense to explore the relaunch of negotiations through a mix of these tracks. as the secretary said, we believe that the differing views of the parties can be reconciled through good faith negotiations. now, as to your earlier comment about being discouraged, although there are many differences between the middle east and northern ireland, in this respect, my experience there is relevant. over a period with five years, i chaired three separate sets of discussions. the main negotiations lasted for nearly two years. for most of that time, there was little or no progress and our effort was branded a failure. the question you asked me today i was asked hundreds of times there. but then after two years of saying no, both sides said yes.
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in a real sense, we have 700 days of failure and one day of success. i know that if anything, the middle east is more difficult and more complex. but no matter where the conflict is or what it's about, if you're serious about peace, you can't take as final first know, the second note, or even the hundred no. you can't get discouraged by setbacks and you can't be deterred by criticism. you have to be patient, persevering, and determined. neither the president, the secretary of state, nor i have never promised anything other than a total commitment to comprehensive peace in the middle east. that remains our commitment and our goal.
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>> senator mitchell, given that you're hoping this will launch final status talks, i was wondering if you could talk to us about any context you had with president of abbas since he doesn't plan to run. do you think he's sincere about that or what has the united states been doing to try to convince him -- or if they are, maybe they are not -- to stay on? >> i've had several meetings with president abbas since then and several conversations. we encouraged him to remain in office and work with phyllis and achieving his longstanding goal of the two-state solution which includes as i said earlier an independent, viable and contiguous palestinian state. and we hope that he does stay. we hope to continue working with him. >> yes, senator mitchell, matt has asked this question, but the
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palestinian authority has refused the israeli offer because it doesn't include the east jerusalem. how can you push them to go to the negotiations? >> well, as i said, we believe that the best way forward is to relaunch negotiations in an atmosphere in which they can succeed. we will encourage both sides to continue to take steps that will lead to that result and enable us to begin negotiations in a way that affords what i believe to be a responsible and good prospect of achieving what the palestinians want and what we'd want; that is, a two-state solution with an independent and a voluble and a contiguous palestinian state, and a state of israel living with secure and recognized borders with security for all of its people. and we are going to continue to pursue that object if.
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>> kirit radia with abc news. you've got now a ten month window. do you think that is long enough? what would you like to see happen during that period and what would you like to see the palestinians to next and we're d.c. the process ten months from now? >> we would like very much to begin negotiations on the permanent status issue. as i said earlier in my response to the first question, we think the best approach is a mix of contacts, direct, bilateral in some cases, at varying levels, contact sophos for discussions on permanent status' issues. we hope that there will be a substantial progress. my personal and fervent wish is that we will during this process at some point have a resolution of the issue of borders so that there will no longer be any question about settlement construction, so that israelis will be able to build what they want in israel and palestinians will be able to build what they
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want in palestine. and we think that the negotiations should begin as soon as possible. we hope that time limited to a period at the end of which all of the permanent status' issues will be resolved and the people of the region can achieve their objective. i want to be clear, however, that while this discussion has understandably focused on the israeli-palestinian negotiations, when the president addresses his vision of comprehensive peace, he includes, in addition, israel and syria, israel and lebanon, and the full normalization of relations between israel and all of its arab neighbors. and we are going to continue to pursue those objectives at the same time with the same vigor.
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>> right here. and please state your name at news organization. >> muna shikaki with a arabia tv. there is talk about terms of reference from the americans guarantees to the palestinians so that they can resume negotiations including the 1967 borders, changing some areas from b to eight, and perhaps releasing some prisoners. is there -- are there any american guarantees or terms of reference that you're preparing? >> we have been in discussions with both israelis and palestinians for some time regarding terms of reference for negotiations. we have closed many gaps between them, and why all admittedly important differences remain, we've made very substantial progress. and we continue to explore those, and i will pursue those on my next visit to the region, which will be in the near future, to continue the dialogue and that effort as part of
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trying to bring these parties together. in addition, some of the points you mentioned represent steps that israel can take, and we have encouraged action in that regard as a means of both steps to create an atmosphere towards conducive and what we hope will be good faith and constructive negotiations, and house ways to move us toward the final result. >> glenn kessler with the washington post. i mean, i noticed you didn't in your statement call this unprecedented, there you came very close to that. and i'm just wondering, was there -- is their anything different between what israel has outlined today versus what the secretary labeled as unprecedented when she was in the region a few weeks ago? and can you outline in what ways this is superior to the unstated agreement that the bush administration had with the state of israel?
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>> well, first, as i said that this has never well, first i said that this has never happened before. and if you look in the detection air, that is the definition of unprecedented. >> i know, but that word was loaded. like i said, you came close to unprecedented. >> nothing like this occurred during the bush administration. from 2000 to 2008, there were new housing construction starts on nearly 20,000 new housing units, 9,000 of them between 2004 and 2008. in the moratorium just announced by the government of israel, there will be no new housing construction starts during the 10-month period, none. there will be no approval of any housing projects during the 10-month moratorium, none.
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nothing like this ever occurred during the bush administration. >> the desk has just sent over to me here, mahmoud abbas' comments. he's pressing the necessity that israel put an end to illegal settlements on palestinian territories, which he says bluff the viability of the future palestinian state, which must have east jersey lum at its capital. could you talk to what you think it is in this announcement today by mr. netanyahu that you think the palestinians should find some optimism in or some hope in. >> anyone who opposes settlement construction, continued settlement activity, as does the united states, should, of course, take into account that under the
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moratorium announced today, there will be much less settlement housing construction activity than there would have been if there were no moratorium. that's a fact. support of the parties, encouraging them in their direct talks to move forward. and we believe that's the best way to achieve what is the common goal, not just of the leaders, but more importantly of the people they represent on both sides to be able to live in peace and security. and we will continue to pursue that object it vigorously and to seek to persuade both sides that the wheat board is through negotiation and agreement. >> question here. we are going to take two more after this.
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>> yes, joyce karam with al-hayat newspaper. senator, there are many cynics in the arab world that are saying if washington couldn't get the israelis to completely freeze settlements, how can they force them to withdraw the 1967 borders? i mean, how do you respond to this? what kind of assurances can you give the arab world that these negotiations are -- be different and the one we had previously multiple times? and what can the arab governments do to contribute to the success of such negotiations? >> right. as i mentioned briefly in response to an earlier question and in my remarks, we have asked all of the arab governments to join in the effort in support of
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the therapy sensitive to take steps toward normalization of relations with israel. we've not asked anyone to take the final step of full normalization. what we have asked his gestures on actions, statements, and movement in that direction. for example, we are seeking, and we believe we have gotten a good response, to a multilateral track in which several governments of the region would meet to discuss regional issues that they have in common, such as energy and water, which would follow the resumption of direct negotiations. it won't occur before then, but if direct negotiations can get under way, we believe this could occur. and this would operate to the benefits of everyone in the region, whatever country that have been to live in, because of
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what helped to deal with these important issues that they face in common. and we think that increased contacts between political and non-political leaders, cultural and other exchanges, trade relations and other forms of contact for mutual benefit, all of that can form as throughout the region. now, in response to your first question, of course there can be no absolute total guarantee in advance of what is going to occur in negotiation. i said earlier that if you're serious about this, you can't take the first or second or the
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contract no for an answer, and that has to be the case here. we have to continue to urge, to encourage, to seek to persuade. the alternative is to accept for the people of the region endless conflict, never ending a disagreement, and the absence of opportunity and hope for the future. now, nobody gets everything they want in a negotiation seeking to resolve a conflict like this. there has to be a willingness on everybody's part to give more than they want to give and to accept less than they want to get. that applies to everyone in the process. that takes time, it takes patience, it takes a courageous leadership. i believe that it can and will be done for one overriding reason: it is in the best interest of the people of the region-israelis, palestinians,
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and other arabs. a continuation of this conflict and further delay and attempting to resolve it does not serve the interest of any of them. and the leadership now should commit themselves that the next generation, young people now growing up, those yet to come, israel, palestinian and arab -- don't have to live through what the present leaders have had to live through. and we believe that that can be done, and we are determined that it will be done. >> the gentleman right here, please. >> thank you.
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senator mitchell, you're making it sound as though the israelis have given a concession by their decision today to temper early phase the building of the new settlements. when it is actually an agreement that had taken place and annapolis meeting years ago, during the bush administration. now, asking the arabs also to normalize -- to take steps to normalize the relations with israel -- is like putting the horse before the cart where it is actually supposed to be a result of the peace agreement. now, the syrian government -- on an icy rain reporter, my name is zaher imadi. i'm sorry i didn't mention that. the syrian government has welcomed so much the speech of president obama. your mission. but president asad asked if there is a road map to execute the peace agreement or peace
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negotiations that are supposed to take place in the future with the israelis. do you have any elaborate plan or a detailed plan for your mission where the steps could be taken, one after the other, that you could emphasize the parties must take in order to bridge that peace. what is your goal? do you still recognize 232, three injured 38, the united nations resolution? is a peaceful land and negotiations? i need some explanation along these lines, mr. mitchell, please. >> thank you. i will attempt to provide it. >> thank you. >> we've been consulting intensively with israel and syria for several months. we are seeking a mutually agreeable basis for the parties to renew talks, and we have strongly encourage them to do so. both sides are well aware that the president obama's vision of the comprehensive peace, as i just explained a few moments
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ago, includes israel and syria. we think that is an important part of the objective. i have met with president al-asad and with prime minister netanyahu and discussed directly with them our hope and our encouragement that peace talks be revived, and we will continue in that effort. until now, while they both stayed a willingness to get into them, their differences on how to do so have prevented them. the government of syria wishes to conclude the indirect talks which were begun through turkey last year before going to direct talks. the government of israel prefers to go directly to direct talks about dee dee, without preconditions. we are attempting to find a mechanism on which both can agree, because we think it's important that they begin the process. we want them to do so.
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we want to support that effort in any way that we can. and that will continue. >> last question, back here. please, the leedy. yes. >> thank you so much. this is tulin daloglu with the turkish daily newspaper. you talked about the israeli-syrian talks and that turkey played a role in that. do you still see a role for turkey to play at this time? >> i've had several meetings with turkish officials including the president,, the foreign minister and others, and we welcome the further were dissipation, but that is of course a decision for the parties to make whether or not they wish to continue the indirect talks in that manner. so, it would be a to them to decide how best to proceed. i have told the turkish officials in both syrian and
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israeli officials we welcome that as one mechanism. we welcome any mechanism that will result in progress. and so, we hope -- i intend to make this part of my discussion in my next visit because we do want this process to proceed, not to the detriment, not as an alternative to the talks between israelis and palestinians. i want to make that very clear. these are not exclusive alternatives. these both must happen. we believe they both should begin and we will encourage the parties and we ourselves will do all we can to make that possible. thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen, for your [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009]
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>> eight weeks ago, army general stanley mcchrystal requested an additional 40,000 troops be sent to afghanistan. the white house says the president has now made a decision on afghanistan strategy and will announce it on tuesday night. you'll be able to watch it live on the c-span networks and our website, c-span.org, with a simulcast on c-span radio. president obama's speech from west point begins at 8:00 p.m. eastern time. >> "american i cons," three original documentaries from c-span, now available on d.v.d. a unique journey through the iconic homes of the three branches of american government. see the exquisite detail of the supreme court through the eyes of the justices. go beyond the velvet ropes of public tours into those rarely seen spaces of the white house, america's most famous home. and explore the history, art, and architecture of the capitol, one of america's most
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